Tuesday, December 27, 2005

OCLC Perceptions Report, pt. 1

I'm reading the OCLC Perceptions Report (online, at my in-laws, from a desktop computer...and wondering if I shouldn't have just shredded the tree it would have taken to print this out...but enough of my whining....at least my brother-in-law has a nice monitor...)...Anyway...I'm working on Part 1, and I thought this was a particularly interesting finding....

When asked the following question, "Please indicate if you have used the following electronic information sources, even if you have used them only once," guess which where the top three resources used? (all ages)

Here are your choices...
Ask an expert
Audiobooks (downloadable/digital)
Electronic books (digital)
Electronic magazines/journals
E-mail information subscriptions
Instant messaging/online chat
Library Web site
Online bookstore
Online database
Online librarian question service
Online news
RSS feeds
Search engine
Topic-specific Web sites

Ready for the answer? Ok, the first two are easy...
1. E-mail (74%)
2. Search enginge (71%)

But, what was the third? Online news? nope (but close).... Online bookstore? (nope)...Topic-specific Web sites (nope again)

Drum roll.....
3. I.M./online chat (53%)

I thought this was particularly interesting. Now, I wonder about some of the labels (would most people know what a topic-specific Web page was), but I'm going to use this stat as a quick intro as we start our staff SWOT (Strength, Weakness, Opportunity, Threat) analysis of the Web page...My guess is that most library staff will be surprised by the use of IM/online chat vs other electronic resources....


Blogger scott said...

I'm not surprised. Most of our internet users, and certainly most of our 'regulars' use IM/chat programs. If there were a choice on there for Yahoo Games, or games in general, it would also be a biggie. Good post though. And thank god I read it today, because I had a reference question about SWOT analyses tonight! A real reference question!

10:58 PM  
Blogger Erica Reynolds said...

Really? A reference question on SWOT? Interesante... It's also interesting that most of our regulars are using IM/chat...I wonder how many of our librarians use IM/chat regularly or ever (not counting virtual reference)...
Amy, our new Web Interface Designer, said that at Univ. of Wisconsin, all the staff in her department had IM accounts so they could quickly communicate on projects. This might be how we should institute IM at our library--let staff see how helpful it is by encouraging them to communicate internally through IM ("calls" to the support desk, for example)...and then we could roll out IM reference...All the libraries I've heard from say that IM reference #'s blow away the virtual reference numbers in the first week....

7:26 AM  
Blogger scott said...

I think it would be great to institute that sort of thing at the ref/jref desks. Not only would it get specific answers quickly, it would build friendships at other branches. Also, the immediacy of a phone call is bypassed by IMing, too. I, for one, am a frequent IM user (trillian's the best!), and I'm sure most of the youthful infos/youths have had experience with it too.

And, about SWOT analysis, I was very surprised, and happy that I looked knowledgable about it to the patron.

9:52 AM  

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